Harry Potter & the Cursed Child Part One || Theatre Review

This could be the smallest review ever as I could simply use one sentence to describe the play: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

You can’t read it, you must see it.

I was a sceptic about Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. I thought J.K. Rowling was after more money or that the world had gotten a little too bored of vampires and that it was simply a glamour project.

I told myself this yet still stayed up until 2am to read the play when it was released.

I didn’t get on with the book so well – see my review here – and I thought that this confirmed most of my fears. But it wasn’t all bad and I wanted to see the play, to give it that chance.

Unfortunately, by this point, the tickets had all sold out.

So begins the tale of spending my Friday afternoon lunch breaks hovering over the keyboard for ‘Friday Forty’ when Nimax release 40 tickets for Harry Potter the next week.

I never won buton the third attempt I decided not to bother waiting in the queue and just look at the availability and lo and behold there was a cancellation.

I booked part 1 – got great seats in the stall! – and then waited patiently for a cancellation of part 2. I got really lucky and was able to get tickets for both parts of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – Part 1 on the 19th of October and Part 2 on the 21st

As you can have guessed – particularly if you follow me on any social media, I saw the first part last night.

Ohmygod. It was so good!

I go to the theatre a lot – probably more than most – and I love it. The atmosphere, the adrenaline from the fear that something will go wrong, live theatre is just fabulous! Now incorporate Harry Potter, live magic tricks, special effects and a massive story into a stage show and you can’t even begin to comprehend the impressiveness of the situation!

Whilst the things I found wrong with the script remain – of course: for example the relationship between the two protagonists which should have been ‘more than just friends’ but wasn’t and the slightly fan-fiction subplot – the actual show was brilliant!

The casting is the best I’ve seen in a while! Scorpius Malfoy, played by Anthony Boyle, steals the show. When he first appears you think he’s a quivering geek with a really odd accent but actually by the second scene you have so much affection for him and his friendship with Albus. He also has the best one-liners! He had the whole audience in fits with the simple shouting of the word: ‘no!’ His comedic timing is on point.
Scorpius and Albus - rights attributed to Manuel Harden

Sam Clemmett is also great at Albus but I do wonder if he gets overshadowed by Anthony Boyle just a bit, but it’s not the end of the world.

Jamie Parker and Poppy Miller are fantastic as Harry and Ginny. I found Harry to be a bit of bastard in the script, I couldn’t picture him without seeing him as this arrogant angry man but actually, Jamie Parker brings a realistic pain to the role of the boy who lived trying to be the man who lives normally.

Of course you have to mention Noma Dumezweni and Paul Thornley as Hermione and Ron. Such a gorgeous coupling. The best scene is one between ‘’Ron’ and Hermione and it’s the funniest piece of theatre I’ve seen in years. I missed the next scene partly because I was still crying with laughter!

The casting is simply great.

The setso simple yet effective. Turn-tables and staircases and youve got it in one. Very simple yet there is one scene of intricate choreography which says so much with so little.

Characters – I was always a bit miffed by the lack of characters that transferred over into this production – no Neville, Luna, Molly Weasley or Ghosts! But when Dumbledore comes on-stage – for the briefest of cameos – people in the auditorium cheered. I don’t know what it is about that character but I felt uplifted seeing him depicted on stage. It was weird. Like Dumbledore was real all of a sudden? It really was a magical moment.

The Magic!

Okay first of #KeeptheSecrets I’m not saying much. I can’t. But it is great. I had about 4 moments of ‘how did they do that?’ throughout the show. One moment being a particularly fabulous piece of acting by the mains which will haunt me – in a good way – in wonderment of how they possibly did what they did!

It is worth going just for the tricks.

Overall, whilst the first half was much stronger than the second – partly due to the comedy that it instils, and the lack of a more romantic relationship (writer’s fault, not actors! They play it beautifully) between the two mains, it is a 5-star performance.

The worst thing about itI probably wont be able to see it again for another 2 or 3 years due to it being sold out! Soooo good!

I hope everyone gets a chance to see it. I would highly recommend it. Don’t miss out by being a sceptic. Give it ago and then make up your mind.

Part 2 review to come at the weekend!

Happy Reading!

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